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Frasier Online Episode Guide -> Season 1 -> Episode 1.08

Beloved Infidel
Episode Details

Written by: Leslie Eberhard

Directed by: Andy Ackerman

Original US airdate: 4th November 1993

Original UK airdate: 8th June 1994

Cast Information
Main Cast
Frasier Crane .... Kelsey Grammer
Niles Crane .... David Hyde Pierce
Martin Crane .... John Mahoney
Daphne Moon .... Jane Leeves
Roz Doyle .... Peri Gilpin
Recurring Cast
Guest Cast
Marion Lawler .... Pat Crowley
Waitress .... Julie Gill
Guest Callers
Danielle .... JoBeth Williams

Episode Synopsis

While Frasier and Niles are eating together at a Seattle restaurant, they spy Martin having dinner with an old family friend Marion Lawler, who they hadn't seen since a rift took place between the Cranes and the Lawlers. This sets Niles' mind to work and having dug out his old journals and photo albums, comes to the conclusion that Martin had an affair with Marion. When confronted with this, Martin admits it. Frasier finds it hard to come to terms with this when he is visited by Marion Lawler who explains that it wasn't Martin having the affair but Hester Crane, the boys mother, with her husband.

Episode Title Cards
  • Not Now...Now!
  • The Lady Vanishes
  • Dr Shecky Crane
  • Things Best Left Unsaid
  • The Home Care Specialist
  • Like Father, Like Son

Episode Highlights

- Niles and Roz meeting at the radio station when he forgets who she is again.

- After having his car towed away at the restaurant:
Daphne: Good evening Dr Crane. What brings you here?
Niles: A rent-a-car thanks to my brother

- Referring to his boyhood journals:
Niles: By 10, my writing had grown considerably tighter.
Frasier: Among other things.

- Niles snatching a sniff of Daphne's hair.

- Frasier [to Niles]: Doesn't it bother you that your father cheated on my mother?

Frasier Online Episode Review

A low key episode, but nonetheless still a pretty good one as the Crane boys learn that their mother cheated on Martin. The scene where Frasier and Niles end up spying on Martin and Marion is pretty funny, while the scene towards the end where Frasier realise they now have something in common - their wives both cheated on them - ends up being quite touching.


74 %

Latest Viewer Episode Review

Avg. Viewer Review: 80.5%
Total Number of Reviews: 8

Affairs of the human heart, Nov 29, 2011

Reviewer: David Sim from Skelmersdale, Lancashire

The first season of any TV series is perhaps the most crucial. Its the one where it has to sell an audience on the characters, convince the networks this isn't just a one-trick pony, but a show with a long and enduring shelf-life. Especially if they want to see a glimmer of that elusive second season at the end of the tunnel.

Frasier's first season took the time to shape and model its characters with an admirable restraint. But there is an unfortunate downside to that. When an episode is character-based it means that the laughs may have to be sacrificed somewhat, to pave the way for greater things to come.

The first four episodes managed to introduce themes and situations that became indispensable fixtures for this show. But they also balanced them out with a healthy share of good jokes and top comedy. Superbly in the case of The Good Son and Dinner at Eight.

The previous three episodes seemed less assured, and didn't hit the same bullseye when it came to maintaining that balance. After such an impressive beginning, it was disappointing to see that Frasier had the same growing pains as any show in its first season.

Happily Beloved Infidel picks the season up out of the rut it had fallen into and manages to shine a light on the characters, develop them, without ever sacrificing comedy for drama.

We've already seen the differences between father and son, Niles falling for Daphne, Frasier and Niles' snobbery, disastrous dinner dates as well as dinner parties. But Beloved Infidel is the first to show us a glimpse into the Crane family history.

Frasier and Niles are dining at a fancy restaurant (where else?) when they happen to spot Martin at an adjoining table with Marion Lawler, a former friend of the family. It looks a bit intimate, and when a tearful Marion flees the restaurant, it gets the Crane boys thinking about the rift that came between they're families.

Niles pores over his boyhood journals, and it dredges up a memory from when the Cranes and the Lawlers vacationed together. Niles distinctly recalls Marion in Martin's arms, meaning they must have had an affair. When they confront Martin about it, he confirms it.

This shakes Frasier's belief that Martin was a man of integrity. But when Marion stops by the apartment, and Frasier tells her he knows about the affair, it turns out that Frasier's mother Hester was the one who had the affair with Marion's husband.

It ends on a tender scene when Martin tells Frasier he lied for Hester because he didn't want to spoil the perfect image Frasier had of his late mother. And Frasier returns the courtesy when he tells of Lilith's affair with another man. Meaning the two are not so dissimilar after all.

This all sounds very dramatic doesn't it? Most US sitcoms wouldn't want to drag they're feet with such a weighty, emotional storyline, especially when the show has barely begun. While it is tempting to keep bombarding an audience with the funny stuff, and most sitcoms prefer this in they're early days, it only confirms why Frasier was light-years ahead of the competition.

The writers know the difference between drama and melodrama. Its easy to confuse the two, but Frasier sidesteps such a pitfall by leavening the serious plot with humour in every single scene.

Like when Frasier and Niles see Martin at the same restaurant they're at:

(Niles) "I just realised. If Dad's eating here this can't be a very good restaurant."

Or when Frasier sees Eddie rolling around on the couch:

(Frasier) "Well I see all sorts of things have been going on behind my back!"

Beloved Infidel has many funny things about it, but the chief pleasures of the episode is the way it brings Frasier and Martin closer together. The fact that they now have something to share in is a pivotal moment in the development of both characters. While it is fun to watch this proverbial Odd Couple snipe at one another, its gratifying to see them getting along. Only in small doses mind you!

Its also nice to see Niles getting in on the act as well. One of the peculiar things about the first season is that the producers took a long time to realise what an enormously gifted actor David Hyde Pierce was. Too often they shunted him off to the side, more like a spectator than an actual participant in the episode. But even that is better than the way Peri Gilpin is treated. Its sad to note that she's only in the opening scene, and she has no part to play in the actual plot.

Still, Beloved Infidel is definitely a highlight of the season. Its nice to see a show taking risks with itself, bringing drama to the fore when most sitcoms would be content to play it safe this early in the series' lifetime.

Rating: 85%


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